Chemistry professor Vincent Rotello is among the recipients of $25,000 awards from the Commercial Ventures and Intellectual Property (CVIP) Technology Development Fund administered by the President’s Office.
The awards for groundbreaking faculty inventions, which were announced March 25 by President Robert L. Caret, went to eight projects across the five-campus UMass system. The $200,000 in funding is generated through commercial licensing ventures in partnership with a contribution from the President’s Office.
“These are the discoveries that help change the world for the better, create new jobs and businesses and make us very proud of the groundbreaking work being done on the campuses of the University of Massachusetts,” said Caret. “This year, we are recognizing work that will make our beaches and pools safer, improve medical outcomes, provide better detection of tumors, and help us to find dangerous levels of heavy metals in our water and food.”
In his project, “A Rapid Colorimetric Test Strip Sensor for Environmental Bacteria Detection,” Rotello and colleagues are developing paper test strips that provides a visual readout of water quality within five minutes – a tool that could help determine the safety of pool, lake or ocean water instantly. The strips use nanoparticles that generate a colored response when bacteria are present, providing an instant readout. The CVIP funding will help the team optimize particle and printing conditions for economical, large-scale manufacturing of these strips.
The other seven awards went to faculty members from the Boston, Lowell and Worcester campuses. To date, the CVIP Technology Development Fund has backed 74 projects, resulting in numerous commercial licenses and patents, the creation of four successful start-ups, and significant licensing income and equity.
“CVIP recognizes and rewards cutting-edge research projects that not only put our faculty and students at the forefront of their industries, they have the potential to create steady streams of revenue for our campuses,” said William S. Rosenberg, CVIP executive director.